Miracle of Sound - Encore

Miracle of Sound - Encore
Crucible and Gordon Freeman Saved My Life

MiracleOfSound | 26 Apr 2012 16:00
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"Crucible"

"Crucible" happened very organically. I originally planned to have it with lyrics but the melody was so strong that it just seemed to grow into itself as just music. I felt the music (unlike a certain ending) could express the intented emotions and feelings all by itself without the need for clarification.

It is basically very simple - "this is how Mass Effect makes me feel". It's big, bombastic, emotional and epic all the way to the end until it fades into ambiguous white noise and ends abruptly just when you think there's going to be another huge climax. I took a risk with that audio gag - some say it makes the musical piece suffer but most understand what it means. It's not meant to be an insult to the game; if anything it is my way of trying to express what I think Casey and Mac were actually going for with the "speculation from everyone" stuff.

"Blah blah blah ending ending shut up Gav!"

Ok, ok - I'll shut up about the ending, sorry! Anyway, to create this song I wanted to make something that was like a tribute to the three soundtracks for the three games:

Mass Effect 1 - The programmed synths and Vangelis/Blade Runner -style arpeggiators.

Mass Effect 2 - The classical strings playing a big sweeping melody and the pounding, thumping percussion that was meant to invoke the Suicide Mission soundtrack (my favorite scene and accompanying music in any piece of entertainment, ever).

Mass Effect 3 - The subtle twinkling soundscapes and the melancholy piano interrupted and oppressed by the low, growling, Reaper-esque synth drone.

So I mixed it all up into one. It was a very hard track to arrange because there's so much going on in it, so many layers and counter melodies happening at once. Due to the lack of lyrics, a verse or a chorus, it was a challenge to pick what went where and for how long. It was actually 40-50 seconds longer and I ended mercilessly cutting off all the fat at a late stage. The quiet section at 2.28 with the distant singing was a last minute change to make the piece more dynamic. (Poor Justin gets a lot of last minute changes from me while he makes the videos, haha.)

Anyway, it was something a little different and you guys absolutely loved it which made me happy. A good way to start year two!

Criticisms:

Gavin this is only a game. Nothing more.

Except it isn't. The Mass Effect universe is so much more than a "game" to its fans. It's a collection of stories and characters they are hugely passionate about and emotionally invested in. Statements like yours devalue gaming as an art form and even as a hobby. In fact, why are you even posting on a gaming forum if that's how you feel about the medium?

This kind of "epic" 2 Steps To Hell Stuff is way over-used.

Thanks for you feedback, I am listening.

The ending was a bit ... abrupt.

Artistic integrity.

This was wonderful but I'd love to hear it with lyrics. Would you ever consider a version with lyrics?

Entitled whining.

It was amazing but it was too short! I want more!

Starchild was putting pressure on me to have it done by the release date.

This made me do calibrations in my pants.

Garrus would be proud!

This was absolutely spectacular. Heroic. Goosebumps all the way through. Your best work.

Looks like "New Black Gold" has a competitor!

How are you not rich and famous?

EA forgot to send me my big check for defending the game on Twitter.

I want to leave you with a hilarious little conversation that happened on the Facebook feed for this song. Sometimes you guys make me laugh so hard ...

Mars Morand • Cause no matter what scars you bear ...

Simeon Ivanov • Whatever uniform you wear ...

Fredrik Nyrell • ... you'll still be attractive to krogan women.

Christopher Grant • @Fredrik Nyrell AAAAAAHHHHHH HAHAHAHAHAHAHA

I love you guys. Thanks for an amazing year and here's to many more!

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